Our family used to share Christmas Dinner and a great game of charades with dear friends who have since moved away. While they’re no longer at our table — the heavenly dish I used to make is. Dubbed “Christmas Potatoes” by their youngest, Henry, it has been referred to as that since. Very easy to double and you can do ahead and warm them up closer to dinner.
- 2 fennel bulbs
- 3 leeks, cleaned and trimmed
- 4 Tbs olive oil
- 2 cloves of garlic, minced
- 2 1/2 pounds Yukon Gold potatoes
- 2 cups plus 2Tbs. heavy cream
- 2 1/2 cups Gruyere or Fontina cheese, grated
- salt and pepper to taste
- Preheat oven to 350. Butter a 10×15 baking dish.
- Remove stocks from fennel and cut in half. Remove the cores and thinly slice the bulbs. Cut the leeks lengthwise down the middle and then thinly slice the halves. Sauté the fennel and the leeks in the olive oil and then add the garlic after 5 minutes. Continue to sauté for 10 more minutes.
- Wash the potatoes and thinly slice them. In a large bowl combine potatoes, sauté fennel/leek mixture, 2 cups cream, and 2 cups cheese. Mix well and salt and pepper generously.
- Pour potatoes in the baking dish, press down to smooth the mixture. Combine the remaining cream and cheese and sprinkle on top.
- Bake for 1 1/2 hours until bubbling and top is browned.
- Let stand 10 minutes before serving. Serves 10.